In heavily hunted areas you can tell a lot about the competition by jewelry posted on detecting forums or social media sites, if they post finds.
A beach hunter predominantly posting gold bands, is probably missing a heck of a lot of valuable gold rings with stones.
A beach hunter who posts a wide variety of gold rings including thin platinum or gold rings with stones, has no problem detecting gold bands.
You could count me in the last beach hunting example, as my gold rings with stones and gold bands count is about even this year.
I have stated in my beach metal detecting books and previous blogs, if you can detect small gold you will never have a problem detecting big gold.
Every time I have run across an excellent beach hunting opportunity and recovered multiple gold rings, I have always had a good balance of gold rings.
The most gold rings I found in one beach hunt was twelve gold rings on a two hour beach hunt a few years ago, in a mid beach runnel opposite an old beach entrance.
That memorable beach hunt before the tide came in, I recovered gold and silver rings of all sizes including several thin rings with stones, which told me I had my metal detector set up correctly and I was using the best search technique for the area.
One of the best insults I ever received was from a full time water hunter who accused me of mugging old ladies because of the wide variety of ladies rings with precious stones I used to post on detecting forums back in the day.
Far from being insulted, I took it as a compliment to the way I use my metal detectors and my beach hunting skills.
Guilty as charged on stalking old ladies at the beach, but it was sunscreen lotion and water that did the dirty work.
When other beach hunters circle around mobbed spring break beaches, I go looking for rings with stones at beaches frequented by the parents and grandparents who pay for those college funds!
If you only ever find gold bands and are lacking in the diamond or emerald department, it probably has to do with the following three things that make a huge difference when searching for valuable rings with stones.
Location, location and location.
If it is not location, the problem is not being able to detect small gold.
A small gold detection problem may be either metal detector or search technique related, or a combination of both.
Don't get me wrong, I love the clanking sound of a heavy gold or platinum band in my scoop, but one thin ladies gold ring with a chunky diamond can be worth thousands of dollars more than a half dozen heavy gold bands.
Smaller and harder to detect platinum and gold bands with valuable stones are more likely to go undetected at tourist beaches with competition trying to cover ground quickly.